What if you are perfect the way you are? What if you were enough? How would that feel?
I’ve been thinking about this for a while.
One thing for sure is that you have to do to stop feeling like you are not enough, and don’t need “more” to feel better and be happy is to stop looking outside and start looking inside. “Stuff” can’t, and will never-ever make you happy. It will give you only temporary comfort or pleasure, so it never lasts. And “clinging” to your “stuff” creates suffering as most all wisdom traditions teach.
I realized in order to find my true happiness, I had to find “myself”.
That is where I started, and that is exactly what I set out to do. From this point forward, my life started to completely change.
Then I put on my Spandex and went to a yoga class.
I was the only guy in the room full of ponytailed women in Lululemon. I was also out of shape and the feminine energy in the room was so amazing it started wafting over to me. Sitting in a meditation pose at the beginning of the class was the first time in a very long time, I felt a calm and peaceful force inside me.
I originally started yoga as a recommendation to relive pain from a sports injury, but soon I was doing yoga at home too, and that led me to meditation and mindfulness, and that led me down the rabbit hole into my-self.
Over the years I searched to find myself in books and in teachings from people like Eckhart Tolle, Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer, Michael Singer, Thich Nhat Hanh, Jack Kornfield, Osho, John Kabat Zinn, Yogananda, Mooji, Ram Dass, Swami Sivananda Saraswati, Pema Chodron, Sadhguru, Dalai Lama, Swami Sri Yukteswar, Ramana Maharishi, Jayakar Krishnamurti, Bentinho Massaro, Michael Singer and Tony Robbins to mention a few.
I went to India and slept in Ashrams, joined Aarte and Satsangas along the Ganges, travelled with Swami’s, (ordained men and women of the cloth), through villages listening to ancient wisdom from elders and Guru’s. I went to the meditation caves in Gangotri India in the Himalayas and dipped in the glacial waters at the foot of the Ganges.
I climbed in the Himalayas in Nepal with a Buddhist guide for eight days and joined in meditation in the ancient temples of Kathmandu. I lived in a forest in a six-foot by six-foot hut within a Monastery in northern Thailand where acceptance meant shaving my head, beard and eyebrows, eating once daily at 8am and waking at 3:00am daily to start meditating in a massive temple. At 5am I went on alms walk with the monks through the village to receive food from the villagers for our daily meal. This was one of the most humbling and clear moments of my life.
In southern Thailand, my meditation teacher Tobi, in Phuket who I studied with for three weeks told me to “contemplate death” before I left him to island hop. Two days later I was bitten by the second most poisonous snake in Thailand while on a small island far from any city where it was a race against time by stolen boat to get to a hospital; the entire episode was like a scene out of a James Bond movie.
I also went to Ubud Bali to immerse myself in Yoga and learn about Buddhism and do walking meditations along rice fields. I also studied and continue to study Mindfulness and Meditation, Hinduism, Buddhism and Yoga also at the University of Toronto. These are just some of things I have done and learned to find my inner-self and my foundation.
I’ve learned a lot from my travels and the deeply spiritually connected people I have been blessed to have met. I have learned life-lessons from successful entrepreneurs I’ve bumped elbows with and made friends with. But, I’ve also met a lot of successful people and everyday people who admit something is missing in their lives and are all now feeling lost and trying to find themselves.
“The planet does not need more ‘successful people’. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers and lovers of all kinds.” Dalai Lama
I no longer see money as the object. I also see mankind in some trouble; humans needing refocussing, the planet needing love. So many people especially seem unfulfilled, lost and tired, but rarely want to admit it and don’t know where to turn or how to change it. Many people I know, including me, are asking “Is this all there is? What am I doing all of this for? I want to get off the hamster wheel. I want to live. I want to be free!”.
There is nothing wrong with working hard and striving, but it’s when we become lost in it, “the chase”, the need for “stuff” and wanting “more and more”, this is when we begin to suffer, this is when the planet suffers. There is a balance, and when that comes from a place of being centred and “knowing thyself”, we make wiser choices in our lives, for ourselves, and those around us. That is how we change our world.
Back to the drawing board?…Nope
You are probably like me- wondering what it would be like to start all over again, wanting to start fresh, to do something meaningful and deeply rewarding and spiritually fulfilling.
What would you change if you could start all over again? Would you want to move to the country, a small community, work your own garden and watch your kids grow? Or would you simply want to create a balance in your life where you get to actually experience all of it on a deeply profound level while attaining your passions? Do you want to take a simple approach to life and yet build something awesome that’s supported by your heart?
For me, it’s not about a money driven career. I’m learning to live simply, where less is more, and building something really cool that is part of the solution and not the problem. Money is a by-product of following your passion, it’s what you do with it that matters.
I get all this “go-go-go” mindset and the “improve yourself” and “be the best you can be” noise out there with an infinite amount of coaches and teachers and seminars to join, but if at the core you aren’t stable and connected to yourself and can’t answer the question: “who am I?”, maybe you need to find yourself; you’re true nature, your deep passion for life.
“You already have what you’re looking for.” Allan Watts
We all look “outside” for our happiness, in other “things”. From being empty and very unhappy in my own life, I started to look for answers, and what I learned from all my experiences, study and travels was that I only needed to look inside and realize I’m much bigger than I could have ever have imagined, (big topic and more of that to come). That was my journey and the more I focussed on that, the more everything came together and the more rooted and content I became; it was that “pinch of salt” in the soup of my life that was needed to open my eyes to deeper meaning, fulfillment, joy and love. We all can have it too.
The process has been nothing short of amazing and life-changing for me, and the closer I move to it, into it, the better I keep feeling and the more my life improves. This expansion is much like the blooming of a flower.
This might be a good place for you to begin the process to get off the dizzy ride and the digital slavery of our electronics and raise your head up and start to learn more about finding yourself. Slowing down and smelling the roses, becoming grounded and connected, and seeing you can have more with less; less looking outside and more looking inside.
My life now is about sharing what I know, the stories and experiences and teachings that made huge impacts in my very being, the lessons I have learned and the love that keeps rising in me.
With simple practices, simple lessons, and starting to meditate you will immediately start experiencing changes inside and the way you look outside. Come for the ride of your life by joining me in the unfolding of your true-self.
“If your thoughts are beautiful, then everything that happens to you is beautiful.” Sanskrit saying
Thanks for reading, and start meditating and being mindful. It will change your life:)